At baptism, all who are baptized receive a baptismal candle, lit from the large Paschal Candle, representing the light of Christ that shines in their lives. At Zion, we encourage everyone to celebrate their baptismal birthdays every year. This encouragement is not only for the newly baptized, but everyone of any age who has been baptized at any time. Just as we often celebrate birthdays, even more we should celebrate the day we were given a sign and a promise that God has claimed us, named us, and given us a light in Jesus to lead the way.
Sometimes with the way our culture celebrates Christmas, the meaning and importance connected to our lives can be lost or forgotten. For this reason, Christians have observed the season of Advent as a way to prepare for Christmas and to welcome the same Jesus, who is born into our hearts. This year, our Advent and Christmas celebrations focus on the light of Christ, “A Light to Lead the Way.” We anticipate the celebration of the birth of Jesus, just as we long for Jesus to come again to bring the kingdom of God in its fullness. As we do, we will hear God’s word from the prophets of old, who promise the light that leads the way of hope, love, joy, and peace. Jesus will come again to bring the light in its splendor. In the meantime you have that light already, even if only a dim specter of Christ’s light, because in baptism you are marked with the cross of Christ, sealed by the Holy Spirit, and led by the light of Christ. As you live in that promise, you bear that same light to the world.
As we focus on this theme of “A Light to Lead the Way” in Advent and Christmas, remember your baptism! If your baptismal birthday falls during this season, celebrate God’s light in your life.
Read more in this month’s newsletter, below.newsletter-novdecjan-2016-2017-web-version